DJs play parties, but not sex parties

Getting their collaborative start at UVM’s Springfest 2010, Zack “ZJ” Johnson and Chad “Pres” Bechard started playing together largely out of convenience. “The reason why we came together was [that] we only had a 20-minute slot and there were five DJs,” Bechard said. “We wanted a way to make it more memorable.” Johnson and Bechard decided to perform together, with two DJs on stage at once. “[We wanted to add] elements to a show people wouldn’t be used to seeing,” Johnson said. “With two DJs it’s like having four arms at once.” Like their collaboration, their name came about with a certain degree of spontaneity. “[Chad] came up with Lazerdisk — it’s a weird, old, dead technology that lasted for like a year,” Johnson said. The rest of their name however, was more difficult to decide upon. “Our friend George [who was working at Springfest] was like ‘What’s your name,'” Bechard said. “We had been throwing a couple of ideas around [and ultimately] George announced us as Lazerdisk Party Sex and we were like ‘Okay, we’re sticking with it.'” Bechard and Johnson insist however that the name is not an indication of the shows they play. “We’ve never DJed a sex party,” Bechard said. “I blame George.” Originally, Johnson and Bechard didn’t have definite plans to take the collaboration further down the road from Springfest. “We didn’t know if it was going to work,” Bechard said. “Once it ended up working we said, ‘let’s see where this can go.'” Music websites and blogs, such as The Hype Machine, have been fundamental in attracting listeners, Bechard and Johnson said. “That’s what has really propelled us forward in the collective consciousness,” Bechard said. “People have listened to our music in [places ranging from] Sweden to Arizona to New York. Even if we got tons of gigs around town we wouldn’t be able to reach those people for years.” From the start, things have happened quickly for Lazerdisk Party Sex. “In April it was like we have this spot [at Springfest,]” Bechard said. “This rapid growth is pretty crazy.” Bechard and Johnson want to continue to take their music and live act further and further. “It started out as two guys in stormtrooper helmets DJing, but with every show that we’re doing we’re trying to take it further,” Bechard said. Lazerdisk Party Sex wants to take their shows beyond what is common with other DJ shows. “There are a lot of shows where DJs put on music and people grind and dance and it’s a rave party,” Johnson said. “With design and production, we want to do more.” On Dec. 9, Lazerdisk Party Sex is DJing at the Black Light White Out party at Higher Ground, organized in collaboration with T-shirt company I’m Partying. For the event, Johnson and Bechard wanted to focus on production and visual elements, as well as the music. The event will feature multiple types of lights, as well as a custom-made stage — something Higher Ground has never had before, Johnson said. “Basically it’s going to look like a spaceship,” he said. Still, the music is central to the show. “It’s going to be a super intense, fun set,” Johnson said. “Intense in a good way.” Lazerdisk Party Sex and I’m Partying planned the event with the UVM exam schedule in mind. “[Friday] is a reading day, so we want everybody to come party with us on Thursday night,” Johnson said. “They can still study the next day,” Bechard added. Student tickets for the Black Light White Out party are $10 with a student ID.